NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The Federal Emergency Management Agency and the city of New Orleans have reached a $2 billion settlement to fix the city's deteriorating interior streets and the leaking sewer, water and drainage lines that run beneath them

A news release from the city on Thursday says the windfall is expected to set off a massive construction effort that could last at least a decade and finally begin to answer the outcry from residents about the often abysmal condition of their streets.

The news release says the FEMA cash will allow the city to tackle about a third of the estimated $9.3 billion backlog of work needed to completely overhaul the city's expansive labyrinth of roads and underground pipes.

Mayor Mitch Landrieu hailed the settlement as a historic agreement that represents the largest infrastructure improvement effort in the city's history.


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